I have a couple of apologies to make right off the bat.

First, to Taylor M., who sent me caffeine money on Venmo back in September, and I never thanked her. Taylor, I don’t know who you are or where you’re from, but THANK YOU. Your name has been in an email in my inbox as a reminder to thank you for the last four months, and I’ll miss seeing it every morning. Please forgive my tardiness.

If you want to get a thank you four months later, as well, please feel free to find me, Shannon Leyko, on Venmo and hook a sister up with some Starbucks $$. By the looks of this season, I’m going to really need it if I have to include words like “platinum vagine” (oh, yes, just wait) in these recaps. Or maybe it’ll go to the wine fund. Either way, I’m going to need something in my system.

My second apology goes out to every single person who put faith in my predictions. If you are on a fantasy league and used my recap pre-cap as a guide for your choices, I have failed you. I miss the good ole days of predicting JoJo to be the next Bachelorette just from her bio picture. Two of my possible Top 4s were sent home the first night, two of my “gone right off the bat” girls are major players this season, and Left Shark Dolphin was quite possibly the funniest girl to ever be on this show.

gay-sharks

I could think of nothingggg but Brittany S. Pierce from Glee during the whole dolphin/shark debate on last night’s episode. Anyone else?

Let me back up for those of you who didn’t watch the premier of The Bachelor last night, but are reading this anyway. I’ve been told there are quite a few of you who forgo the show and instead just read these recaps, which is ridiculous, but obviously I love you for it.

We begin with Chris Harrison’s standard opening speech, promising a season “unlike anything you’ve ever seen before,” followed by a montage of sneak peaks which include everything we’ve definitely seen before: Sea planes, hot tub makeout sessions, and girls yelling Nick’s name over the edge of hotel balconies. Ah, it’s good to be back.

Do you know what else we’ve seen before, and will definitely see again? Nick’s abs. His opening, erm, package was extremely telling of how comfortable he’s become around these producers over the last two years. He gets completely naked for a shower scene, black box included (probably a bit larger than it needed to be– just an observation from someone who’s read Andi’s book) as he says some words I didn’t listen to because I was too busy screeching and covering my innocent puppy’s eyes.

We also learn that Nick can’t say the word “Bachelor.” It’s “Bashler.” For whatever reason, this almost makes me feel bad for him and like him more. Am I falling for producer tricks or is this real life?? I fear I may never know.

Our Bashler led with pointing out all the things people hate about him, because it’s always best to make fun of yourself before anyone else can. He mentioned how much he mumbles, his shifty eyes, and how his hand is constantly on his face. He did not mention his affinity for man scarves and manicures, so I still consider those fair game.

After brief flashbacks of Andi and Kaitlyn dumping him right before he proposed, and a few shots of him making homemade pizza with his family while cradling an adorable asian baby (?), Nick scampers off to meet former Bashlers Golden Boy, Farmer Chris, and Hot Ben.

Golden Boy (Sean Lowe, duh) is clearly the leader of the frat, invited to participate because if he tells the world we should give Nick a second chance, then it MUST be true! Farmer Chris is there to remind us that literally anyone can become the Bashler, and Hot Ben provides some much needed earnestness in the face of what’s guaranteed to be the most Rated R season yet. I almost forgot that Ben and Chris were both on seasons of The Bachelorette with Nick (their villain) until Ben momentarily failed to wipe the disdain from his face as Nick explained why he’s ready to face more humiliation in the name of love. LOL, Benny, keep it together.

A few crunches and a spray tan later, Nick is ready to meet the ladies. First, Chris Harrison introduces the women lucky enough to get their own intro highlights. Shout out to Chris for not wearing a pinstripe suit this season. The dark grey/navy blue tie combo looked fab.

INTRO VIDEOS:

We started with Rachel, who is legitimately one of the best catches this show has ever seen. She’s a super successful lawyer, has a cute gap in her teeth, and is the first woman in Bachelor franchise history confident enough to wear flats during her contemplation walks. When she’s not owning the courtroom, she vacuums her baller apartment. Now that’s some realness. She was basically like, “Yeah, I’m way too successful to pretend like I have some crazy hobby. I work, then I come home and vacuum.” Working women across the country lifted their glasses. We’re rooting for you. (And by “we,” I mean the women who work a lot more than I do.)

Danielle L owns three nail salons. Not as impressive as being a lawyer, but she probably pays her own rent, which is always a plus.

Vanessa is another catch– a special ed teacher who can speak three languages– and I’m beginning to think these girls are cream of the crop. That is, until I realize that producers put their best foot forward.

Cue Josephine.

I was actually too frozen by second hand awkwardness to type notes about Josephine. All I remember is her stroking her cat while meowing in a fashion that made me wonder if cat wiccan is a thing, wobbling across some random balance beam while in heels, and asking sea lions for advice. Like, live sea lions. I can’t, you guys.

Next up is Raven, a gorgeous gal with a thick southern accent that doesn’t match her face whatsoever. All I could think of was what she might look like without the dark tan and Morticia Addams hair. She’s gorgeous, don’t get me wrong, but could easily transform into a typical-looking blonde southern belle. It’s going to be hard to get past how much her voice and face don’t make any sense together.

Corinne. Help us. Help us all. She has a nanny. A nanny who brings her bowls of cucumbers while she “runs a multimillion dollar company.” RIGHT. I can’t tell if her opening line was a spoof of Legally Blonde, but she literally floats by the camera in a pool float. Obviously Top Villain right off the bat– yet another failed prediction on my part.

legally-blonde

Alexis is crazy, but knows it. Unlike Josephine. She wears sumo wrestling costumes to CVS because why not?

Danielle M is a neonatal intensive care nurse. She is sweeter than the 12 seven layer chocolate bars I ate in one sitting over Christmas, and seems…could it be…mature? Tall, gorgeous, saves lives– hopefully forms a girl squad with Rachel and Vanessa because these three chicks are the most impressive women to ever get cast on this show.

Taylor is a mental health counselor. They say that counselors usually have their own counselors, and I hope that’s true.

Liz had sex with Nick at Jade and Tanner’s wedding nine months ago. She is not about to pop out his baby, which is a pro. She is definitely here to get famous, though, which is a con.

It’s finally time for the limos to arrive!

ARRIVALS:

First of all, did any one else notice that it was a female limo driver who opened the door for the first batch? Why that was so significant to me, I do not know, but it was.

Danielle L— Black dress with sheer panels, cut down to her belly button. Nick openly looks at her boobs and says she looks great. She just says she’s excited to meet him before scurrying inside. She’ll be around awhile because the first girl out of the limo always stays around awhile.

Elizabeth— In a white mermaid prom dress from 2009 (which is actually before she even graduated high school…omg), she gives Nick another “I’m glad it’s you” greeting, and I wonder if all the girls will play it safe. (They don’t.)

Rachel— I wouldn’t call her red one-shoulder dress fashion forward, but it looks great on her, and this is a classic case of it’s about the girl, not the dress. (Sorry, I’m getting too far into pageant speak.) She oozes confidence as she delivers her cheesy line, “I already chose my fantasy teams, so while I’m here, I’m only making plays for your heart.” She can do no wrong in my book.

Christen— Fan girls over Nick. He looks annoyed, and that’s before he even knows how she spells her name. I don’t know what concerned me the most– her spazzed out hair or spazzed out yellow dress. She has no clue how she got cast and neither do I, but she seems genuinely nice, so I’ll look past the styling issues.

Taylor— Looks like Jaslene from ANTM and Caila (BIP/Hot Ben’s season/was supposed to be the Bashlerette) had a baby.

taycai

taycai2

RIGHT???

Kristina— Russian accent, royal blue dress, we learn that she’s a major crier.

Angela— One of the many red dresses, tells him she wouldn’t have come if it wasn’t him. YAWN. I’m longing for someone to roll up in a cupcake or to do a backhand spring.

Lauren— The gorgeous blonde I called for Top 2. Wears a golden globe gown, tells Nick that they both have unfortunate last names. His is “Viall” and hers is “Hussey,” so together they’re a disgusting slut! Nick is unimpressed. I forgot he hates blondes.

Michelle— “I’ve heard that your last few relationships were lemons, so lets make lemonade.” I honestly have no recollection of what she looks like and I don’t think it matters.

Dominique— She’s SO EXCITED. So he’s SO EXCITED. They say EXCITED 8 times together before she walks off and Nick looks like he’s not entirely sure what just happened.

Ida Marie— Chooses her favorite crop top dress and stripper heels from her dress up chest. Does a trust fall. She looks so young that Nick asks to see her parent/guardian permission slip. (JK but he should’ve.)

Olivia— Wears fur coat because she’s from Alaska, then gives him Eskimo kisses. She’s real pretty.

Sarah— Wears lavender gown and running shoes, and instead of getting out of the limo, comes running up the driveway. She said “I thought you might appreciate another runner up.” He thinks its cute because she’s cute. They have a good natural connection.

Jasmine G— Brings Neil Lane the diamond guy with her and shows Nick which ring she wants. HELP.

Hailey— Tells Nick she’s not wearing any underwear. He decides this means she gets a second hug. I decide this means I wish I wasn’t doing Dry January.

And so we enter the part of the programming where they should’ve warned all fathers to press mute. Inside the house, Dominique and a few girls discuss the fact that they would definitely have sex with Nick because you have to “test drive the car.” They actually don’t know what that metaphor means because none of them are old enough to have a drivers license.

Astrid— Speaks to Nick in German, asking if he has seen her breasts, because they’re real! He doesn’t know what she’s saying, but somehow his pants got tighter.

Liz— The one who slept with Nick at Janner’s wedding but still isn’t sure if he’ll recognize her because #alcohol. HER POOR FATHER. My stepdad actually knows him. Apparently she has really nice parents. I want to hug them. Liz decides not to act like she knows Nick, even though she does, which makes him second guess himself, so they say hi without ever acknowledging that they know eachother. She thinks Nick doesn’t remember. Nick thinks she’s either a doppelganger or psychotic.

Corinne— Wears a burgundy grecian dress and does a nice job hiding the fact that SHE HAS A FREAKIN’ NANNY.

Vanessa— Speaks to him in French, and this time he looks less turned on and more starry eyed. Starry eyed is what you want from a future husband. Nice work, Nessy!

Danielle M— The neonatal nurse I love. She sounds like she just swallowed glass, but that’s alright because it matches her demeanor. Everything about her is shaky, from her voice to her finger as she feeds Nick some of her dad’s homemade syrup. Instead of it being awkward, it was endearing. Now go inside and find Rachel and Vanessa so you guys can be friends!

Raven— Teaches him a southern chant in a gold dress.

Jamie— Tells Nick she has balls, and he believes her. Then slowly says, “Figuratively…?” because he specifically told the producers he’s not into transgenders. She says yes, then pulls two nose ring balls out of her nose that she’d expertly stashed up her nostrils. I whimper and eat a cookie for comfort.

Briana— Pretty sure she went to a college in Virginia because we have a bunch of mutual friends on Facebook. She does a stethoscope test on his heart. Meh. Probably too normal for this show.

Susannah— Gives him a “beard massage.” He was kind of into it.

Josephine— HANDS DOWN THE MOST AWKWARD ENTRANCE OF ALL TIME. She gives him an uncooked hot dog, which somehow she encased in a book (???), then asks him to eat her weiner “lady and the tramp style.” AND HE DOES.

hot-dog

Interestingly enough, it’s not the gayest thing Nick has ever done.

Brittany— Puts on a glove, asks Nick to turn around and bend over, because she has to make sure he’s “clean.” I’m praying he’s had at least two glasses of whiskey by now.

Jasmine B— I notice nothing but her glaring underwear line.

Whitney— She’s among the prettiest.

Lacey— Rolls up on a live camel and tells Nick she hears he “likes a good hump.” Girls inside are spying on her and are losing their minds.

Alexis— In a Left Shark costume and pageant pumps, she tells Nick that she really loves dolphins! Thus begins the debate about whether she’s a shark or a dolphin. But dolphins are just gay sharks, so what’s the difference?

left-shark

Finally! All the girls are here! Time for Nick to find out just how random casting was this season. (We soon learn that Nick likes random, because he sent home all the basic betches. His taste is essentially opposite that of Ben Higgins.)

Poor Nick struggles with the word “empowered” two or three times during his opening speech to the girls. Speaking is not his forte. The girls don’t care because they signed a contract.

First one-on-one time (that we see) goes to Rachel. Yes! They have amazing chemistry, and he seems thoroughly impressed by her humble confidence. They talk about normal things, like coming from big families and what they do for a living. Someone give this girl the Bashlerette gig already!

After zero chemistry one-on-ones with Chrazy Christen, Danielle with the best boob tape job I’ve ever seen, and Raven Addams, Chris Harrison brings in the first impression rose. The girls begin to panic, but the only one drunk enough to cause a scene is Left Shark. Good and bad news: The good news is that she got drunk in a shark costume, which is hysterical. The bad news is that she’s a happy drunk, so she doesn’t piss anyone off. Instead, everyone kind of loves her. Drama is low, but laughs are high. I’ll take it!

Corinne with the nanny is really good at coming across sweet and flirtatious. After talking with her, Nick then sits down with Vanessa, who he totally vibes with. At this point, Vanessa and Rachel are securely in my Final 4. Right when he looks like he might kiss Vanessa, Corinne interrupts to request more one-on-one time. Nobody is happy about this, including Nick. She gets right to the point after readjusting her boobs a few times, and plants one on him. He is surprisingly receptive, and welcomes her puckered lips with his tongue. Nick tells the camera he hopes nobody saw them. Everybody did.

Astrid with the one liner, “Last time, I didn’t know my boyfriend was dating other people. At least this time I know!”

Cliffnotes: Jasmine freaks out because she doesn’t like competing for attention even though that’s literally her entire job as an NFL dancer, Corinne wonders aloud if Left Shark girl wore a shark costume to hide a bad body, Left Shark gets in the pool but is still funny and charming enough for Nick and America to love her, and Nick tells Liz he doesn’t understand why she didn’t contact him in the last nine months if she was actually interested in him after their hook up at Janner’s wedding. He obviously thinks she’s only here to be on TV, which is likely.

First Impression Rose goes to Rachel!! Way to make good choices, Nick!

My notes from the Rose Ceremony, verbatim: 

Vanessa (YAY)

Danielle L

Christen (HUH)

Astrid

Corinne with the nanny

Elizabeth W

Jasmine G

Raven

Kristina

Danielle M the neonatal nurse

Sarah

Josephine (PRODUCER PICK- rolling his eyes while saying her name)

Lacey

Taylor (Caila and Jaslene’s daughter)

Alexis—Left Shark, makes him laugh a lot even while giving out the rose

Hailey (UGH)

Whitney

Dominique

Jamie with balls

Brittany

Liz from Janner wedding

We say goodbye to:

Lauren (WHAT)

Susannah (WHY)

Ida Marie the baby

Olivia the Alaskan

Angela with the big mouth

Jasmine with the full bottom underwear

Michelle (?)

And with that, we’re off! Coming up this season:

Snowy tundras, group walks in South America, dry humping in a bounce house, all the girls crying, Nick crying, and Corinne sneaking into Nick’s room specifically to have sex with him, saying “I have a heart of gold, but my vagine is platinum.” Having just recently become a talent scout for the reality department of a TV production company, let me just give some HUGE props to whatever scouts found Corinne. You deserve a raise.

Nick proposes to someone in the end, in an even more wacked out room than Farmer Chris’ insanely decorated barn. So much to look forward to! I promise not all recaps will be this long. The first night is always a doozy. See you next week!